I can come to your library, book club meeting, or conference to talk about how to help your readers find their next good read. Click here for more information.

Monday, April 27, 2015

Monday Discussion: What's Your Favorite Free Resource?

I make no apologies that my first-line, go to resource for helping patrons find leisure reading options is NoveList. Yes, I have a contract to create content for the database, but it is only because I believe in what it can do. I am also very lucky to be a resident of Illinois, a state which provides a subside so that all public libraries can offer NoveList Plus to all card holders.

Coming up in 3 weeks, I will be providing an in-service program for 3 libraries in Michigan (more details about that soon), and we will be starting the day with my very fun and interactive RA for All program where I walk all staff through the very basics of helping leisure readers.

For this program I do not have a power point, rather I have a list of exercises we all do together, and the workshop is shaped by the staff who are participating in it. I do have one basic document that sits at the center of the presentation though, it is Becky's Ten Rules of Basic RA Service.

After the rules, I have a list of the 5 resources I cannot live without and NoveList is one of them; however, these three libraries do not have NoveList.  Of course, they have already alerted me to this so I can prepare and substitute.

It is really a very easy choice for me; the next best free option would be Fantastic Fiction.  It is not a perfect substitute, but it can be very helpful. But living in this Illinois, NoveList land of plenty got me thinking that I might be getting lazy, and maybe I am missing a much better options.

So that's where you all come in. Time to tell me what I am missing. \
For today's Monday Discussion let me know what your #1 go to free resource is.

I would prefer to hear about the resources that answer the widest range of questions, but if you have a favorite genre resource that you are dying to share, pass it on.

Who knows maybe it will end up in my presentation.

For past Monday Discussions, click here.


Sarah Elsewhere said...

My first pick is GoodReads because I can usually get a good picture from the reviews, and sometimes the discussion forums or lists have good read alikes.

Jenelle said...

I find Goodreads useful too. Sometimes I just google "if you like ___, try ___, and different library websites will come up and I will use those lists.

Amelia Elizabeth said...

It's not the best resource but I like to use FictFact. First its great for patrons who are series readers, they can keep track of the series they are reading and the series their favorite author puts out. At the end of the list of a series they have suggestions and it's based on user tags so it's not completely a great list. One thing I do like is you can see what other readers of that series are also reading.

Marion Teen BPL said...

Goodreads is my go-to for nearly every genre, especially now that more and more authors and public figures whose opinions I respect are on there.

LibraryThing Book Suggester (http://www.librarything.com/suggest) is another great resource I've often used in the past to find recommendations. A list of tags will also pop up with the book, so you can even click on a tag you like and books under that category will appear. You don't even have to become a member to use it!

Katie M. said...

I second the Goodreads suggestions - I don't necessarily use it for readalike options, but I love the user-created lists and the reader reviews. It's also great for jogging my memory about which books I've read recently - I use that a lot if patrons ask about a genre that I read frequently.

Also, the LibraryReads website. That's one of the first resources I turn to when a patron asks for a "good book." Plus, the annotations are all written by RA librarians, so it's super easy to pick up on a book's appeal.